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2XU Winter Training Gear

With Kona behind us and colder months looming ahead, northern hemisphere triathletes are discovering that the opportunity for a warm daylight workout session is quickly being replaced with tenebrous training schedules. As each workout becomes subject to harsh winter weather the key to staying safe, snug and stoked lies deep within your stockpile of cold weather training gear and 2XU is eager to keep you in the training game.

2XU Winter Beanie

Ditch your visor in favor of this cold weather training staple. It keeps sweat away from your eyes all the while keeping you safe with its reflective highlights. Plus it helps to keep you warm. Duh.

2XU Active 360 Run Jacket

Lightweight and all sorts of shiny, the Active 360 Run Jacket will keep you comfortable during the entirety of your workout. Constructed with a warm jersey lining the Active 360 features large vents under the arms to help circulate air through the jacket while you run, keeping your microclimate comfy and cool, not sticky and sweaty. The jacket has only 1 small zip pocket, suitable for keys, but it remains fairly difficult to access making it unideal for storing nutrition. Perfect for short to medium runs the Active 360 will have you training safely and stylishly.

2XU Sub Zero Cycle Jacket

There comes a point in the season where a jersey and arm warmers simply don’t insulate enough. While I don’t recommend cycling in negative degree weather, the Sub Zero Cycle Jacket is designed to do precisely that (albeit as 2XU is Australian they are most likely referencing Celsius, not Fahrenheit). One of the most thought out cycling jacket designs that I’ve seen, the Sub Zero angles its rear pockets allowing easy access while riding and keeps those pockets deep so you can keep extra tubes and nutrition on your back without the fear that they will eject when you hit a rough patch in the road. Comfortably lined with fleece the jacket stays true to 2XU’s design strategy of stitching their garments along the lines of what can be considered a “performance cut”, all at once making it both form fitting and sleek looking.

2XU Men’s Racer Track Pant

When you realize that the idea of leaving your warm and comfy bed to face the stinging winter elements to be shielded by only the thin protection of your summer run shorts isn’t the most motivating means to begin your morning it’s time for a wardrobe upgrade. The Racer Track Pant from 2XU is designed to keep you motivated no matter what the outdoor conditions may be. A basic track pant design, the Racer features two zippered side pockets and drawstring cinching, but where the pant sets itself apart are the outstanding “3D Thermal Knit” high filament polyester yarns. This unique construction will regulate your temperature from the cold and chilly first mile to your steamy and sweaty triumphant finish, meaning that your body will be at a comfortable temperature throughout your workout. Suddenly leaving the shelter of your snug sheets becomes that much easier knowing that you’re perfectly outfitted to battle back against whatever winter weather you may find yourself facing.

Helix Wetsuit Review

The Helix. Crazy. Fast.

Finally, a high-end wetsuit designed for an elite level athlete. The Helix wetsuit is designed for athletes who understand that certain wetsuits may increase your buoyancy to the point where the suit counteracts a strong swimmer’s stroke, forcing them to float too high in the water, interrupting a memorized motion that’s been practiced and refined for years. Blue Seventy’s top-tier design keeps athletes neutrally buoyant while strategically placed buoyancy panels deliver float in all the right areas.

In addition to a high-performance body position the Helix offers a rare and dangerously thin 1mm thickness in both the shoulders and arms, giving the athlete serious range of motion but also allows for a greater “feel” of the water. This means that the athlete is more aware of their arm position, encouraging better technique and a more efficient overall stroke.

This is a great thing if you’re a serious swimmer looking for a serious suit, but for the serious triathlete the Helix not only offers full graduated compression in the legs of the suit, improving blood flow; the back of the knee is composed of special flex panels to keep your transition bound legs pumping up the beach without added resistance.

The reverse zip design is yet another advanced attribute that is designed for a more masterful athlete. What it means for you:

  • Faster suit exit
  • Can’t be pulled down by other swimmers
  • Thinner neck results in greater comfort and improved sighting

This is far and away the Helix’s greatest design triumph and tragedy. Honesty, I can’t zip it without help, period, which is where for me the suit looses some of it’s luster. If you’re a strong swimmer, advanced triathlete or swim stroke nerd then the Helix will be the fastest suit you’ve ever worn or will ever wear and if you’re not, you have a suit to look forward to wearing when all that training and coaching pays off.

Why Do Swimskins Work?

http://www.onetri.com/torque-swimskin-mens-short-john-2011-p-4841.html

Wearing a wetsuit for the added buoyancy gain and inherent thermal protection certainly isn’t cheating and for many athletes it can be an absolutely necessity, but at a certain level of racing the competitive advantage gained from wearing a wetsuit is banned. Triathlon’s pinnacle race distance, the Ironman, and its respective championship race, Kona, have witnessed the rise of a new form of swimming garment; the swimskin.

Bred out of the need for a hydrodynamic suit that adheres to the guidelines from the scrabble list of acronymic governing bodies: USAT, WTC, and FINA, the swimskin has evolved into a textile based solution for elite open water swimmers looking to always be faster than the rest of the pack and to gain a competitive edge against other racers. TYR would say that you’re only as fast as your suit will let you be.TYR Torque Pro

Enter the Torque Pro swimskin.

This swimskin is not only going to give you a competitive hydrodynamic edge in the water during the elite races, but for shorter, mid-temperature and high surf-condition races, you’ll be less buoyant through the break, actually making you faster out to the first buoy since you’ll be able to leverage your bodyweight in a more efficient manner against the waves. I’d say for any sprint race or elite IM athlete, these new TYR swimskins are exactly the edge that you need to get the initial lead on the competition and keep them in your rear sights during the swim.

Louis Garneau Tri-Lite Bike Shoes

Louis Garneau Tri Lite Bike Shoe

The Louis Garneau Tri-Lite Cycling Shoe

Louis Garneau makes several different triathlon cycling shoes, including the tri lite, which is a mid to higher end shoe.

I updated to the Louis Garneau Tri-Lite last year from a generic regular bike shoe I bought at a big chain store when I first got started in cycling a few years before.   After a bit of installation to line up the cleats as I had them, I went on the bike for a ride and immediately felt the difference.  This was the first thing I bought with carbon for biking.

By far, one of my favorite features on this shoe is the carbon composite sole.  Because it’s stiffer than the last shoe, the power transfer is significantly more efficient, and my feet are much more comfortable when riding.  These shoes feel much cooler, as Louis Garneau’s Tri-Lites have vented soles to help your feet dry from the swim.

The shoe weighs 226 grams.

Picture of the tri-lite.  Notice how it has one main reversed strap on the upper.

The carbon sole with vent.

Also a great plus about these shoes is the interchangeable sole insert.  Red for colder days, and blue for the warmer ones.

I’ve worn these without socks for sometime now, and I rarely wear my other cycling shoes, which I’ve relegated to spin class.

Check out the tri-lite and other tri shoes at OneTri.com.

2XU Perform Compression

What is 2XU Perform Compression?
2XU has created the first weapon in the arsenal of compression wear to utilize a combination of 50/70 denier fabric in conjunction with the properties found in a circular knit garment, resulting in superior fit, breathability and race-day performance gains. The Perform from 2XU doesn’t simply compress to impress but rather applies an ideal amount of pressure at the body’s extremities so that the levels of graduated mmHg (millimeters of mercury) enhances a healthy body’s circulatory system while augmenting muscle position and response, all without sacrificing range of motion.
Why Perform?
2XU created these race ready and high intensity training garments to assist athletes in four specific ways.
  • The improvement in a healthy circulatory system results in faster warm-up times, working with your body to actually increase the venous return to the heart and lymph to the lymph nodes.
  • Anatomically correct compression holds muscles, minimizing vibration, reducing the level of fatigue resulting from impact and exertion.
  • Perform aids the body’s natural sense of proprioception by stimulating nerve receptors in the limbs, giving greater feedback and response as to where various body parts/limbs are at any given time.
  • The PWX fabric used in the construction of Perform garments utilize a graduated compressive design and a circular knit process which naturally regulates the body’s tempurature, providing better cooling and warmth regardless of region or climate.

PXR Fabric:
Within each line of PXR compression garments 2XU has made use of one of three, or a combination of, their proprietary PWX fabric. This fabric, constructed from superior medical grade circular knit Invista Sport Lycra, has 4 times the durability when compared to elastane found in other garments. In addition to the PWX fabric’s durability 2XU utilizes 50 and 70 Denier Lycra in the construction of it’s Perform garments, where competitors use 30/40 Denier, representing a thicker yarn that delivers a stronger compressive effect across all PWX garments. The Perform garments utilize the PWX FLEX fabric whose elastomeric yarns, when wet from sweat, separate from each other, resulting in increased flexibility and breathability (moisture/vapor transmission). Perform is designed to offer the ideal amount of compression and range of motion for competition and training.

New 2XU Compression Quad Sleeve (Perform)

New 2XU Compression Quad Sleeve (Perform)

As part of the new “PXR” 2XU Compression line, the 2XU Compression Quad Sleeve (Perform) is unisex, versatile, and great for active use to promote the plethora of compression benefits during activity.

Constructed with 2XU’s new fabric, PWX – POWER, WEIGHT, FLEX – this compression piece is arguably a favorite among triathletes because of the ability to isolate a single muscle group that’s prone to soreness during and post activity.   This isolation helps you increase overall blood flow to the area and reduce muscle oscillation.

2XU Compression is packaged and labeled to easily identify its function for athletic use.  Here, the P stands for Perform, or active use.

A sizing chart behind the package helps the shopper pick up the correct 2Xu Compression Quad Sleeve size.

For men, a vote for this product over the 2XU Perform Compression Short has merit when it comes to comfort, as it’s not always necessary to have everything up to your waist compressed.

What are the benefits compression for active use?  Off the bat, here’s two:

Reduced Damage

2XU Compression features muscle containment properties which reduce muscle damage during exercise. By reducing muscle damage, 2XU Compression garments can minimize swelling post exercise and can significantly reduce the severity and duration of exercise induced muscle injury and soreness such as Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).

Increased Performance
During exercise, your muscles are exposed to vibration. This major cause of muscle fatigue, known as muscle oscillation can be reduced when wearing 2XU Compression garments. This leads to improved muscle endurance, strength, power output and lower heart rate for greater performance.

Still curious about the benefits of compression?  See: What is 2XU Compression?

2XU Refresh Compression for Recovery

What is Refresh?
Swelling, muscle degradation, soreness. Every athlete has experienced each of these symptoms and to vary degrees based on each individuals unique level of exertion and natural recovery cycle. The Refresh compression garments from 2XU separate themselves from the already impressive Perform and Xform garments who use 50/70 Denier Lycra in their construction by utilizing a 150 Denier circular knit fabric to provide the highest form of compressive power and stability found in the sports industry. This rigidity augments your natural circulatory flow, enhancing the body’s natural recovery abilities all the while providing the correct level of compression so that the garment may be worn comfortably over prolonged periods of time.

Why Refresh?

Have you every asked your self: What is the best recovery tights? or What is the best recovery socks? From my experience and based on what I’ve read I think 2XU Refresh products should rank well because they seem to put thought and effort into creating their products.
According to 2XU and studies by the Australian Institute of Sport, in approximately 1 hour of wearing a Refresh garment:
  • A significant decrease in and clearing of blood lactate
  • Decrease in exercise-related swelling/blood pooling
  • Decreased perception of muscle soreness.

Simply stated, Refresh gets you back training in better shape with less muscle fatigue. Research has shown that the average femoral vein blood flow may be increased to as much as 138.4% base line when a compression garment has graduated pressure ratings of 18mmHg at the ankles and 8mmHg at the thigh. The Refresh line of recovery garments delivers this level of pressure, meant for a healthy circulatory system, instead of the highest level of pressure found in medical garments, which may inhibit blood flow in a normally healthy athlete, removing any perceived or substantial recovery benefit. The Refresh by 2XU is a purposeful engineered garment and is designed to apply consistent, graduated pressure with the highest quality and longest lasting construction. After wearing Refresh recovery garments it is clear that not every compression garment has been created equal.

PXR Fabric:
Within each line of PXR compression garments 2XU has made use of one of three, or a combination of, their proprietary PWX fabric. This fabric, constructed from superior medical grade circular knit Invista Sport Lycra, has 4 times the durability when compared to elastane found in other garments. Competitor’s fabrics, built from Nylon or elastane yarn may feel “tight” after a first use, however over time these garments struggle to maintain previous adequate levels of pressure, making them a poor investment for the savvy athlete. Refresh’s 150 Denier PWX Power construction results in a compressive garment that will continue to provide recovery benefits long after similar competitor garments have lost their elasticity, lending to 2XU’s trademark, “It’s In Our Fabric”.
If you want to find out a lot more about 2XU compression click here: New 2XU Compression PXR
To buy 2XU PXR compression go here: 2XU PXR Compression
To buy 2XU Refresh specific compression visit here: 2XU Refresh Compression
To learn more about the research done on 2XU products visit here: 2XU Compression Research

New 2XU Compression – Perform, Xform, and Recover

Introduction to 2XU


Based in Melbourne, Australia, the philosophy of 2XU has been to promote human performance through competition and training.  Making a name for itself by crafting wetsuits, compression, and athletic apparel, their functional quality and cool factor is uncompromisingly delivered as an end product.

Through the years, they’ve partnered with heavyweights such as the Australian Institute of Sports and other research scientists, leading 2XU to industry recognition, and most recently becoming the official compression partner of the Ironman brand.

Introduction to Compression

With roots in medicine, compression apparel has found application in sports and competition, aiding athletes to perform better and recover faster.

2XU has redefined the compression category by sourcing and working with the right fabric for varying stages of athletic performance.  2XU’s latest fabric – PWX – which stands for Power, Weight, and Flex, offers different denier gauged fabric, providing different levels of mmHg to narrowly tailor toward the specific needs of an athlete.  This has been the design philosophy of the new 2XU compression, making it one of the unique product  in the industry.

How 2XU Compression Works:

The design of 2XU’s compression is graduated – it’s more compressive at the extremities to encourage and enhance venous return, pushing de-oxygenated blood back to the heart while also allowing the arteries to relax to deliver oxygenated blood to improve overall circulation.

The Benefits of 2XU Compression:

  • Increased blood circulation – sustained muscle performance, less fatigue, and faster recovery.
  • Muscle containment – reduced muscle vibration, improved muscle alignment for increased power.
  • Reduced effects of delayed onset muscle soreness.
  • Improved thermal regulation – better cooling and warming in varied climates

The Primary uses of 2XU Compression:

  • Active wear – warming up, training and racing
  • Recovery – post workout
  • Destination races – Prevention of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and pooling of blood in feet on air travel.
  • Sleeping – Increases circulation for improved muscle repair and faster recovery
  • At high altitude – to help combat less oxygen
  • Rehabilitation from injury or surgery

Introduction to P,X, and R


Perform (Active)

Designed for active use, this category focuses on dampening muscle oscillation during performance.  This unique fabric offers great breath-ability, moisture management, and flexibility to keep the wearer comfortable and focused on performance.

2XU Calf Guard – Perform

Xform (Active and Refresh)

Combining the fabrics from both Active and Refresh, XFORM is powerful and breathable, providing support to dampen muscles oscillation, and more efficient delivery of oxygenated blood to fatigued muscles.

2XU Long Sleeve Compression Top

2XU Long Sleeve Compressoin Top – Xform

Refresh (Pure Recovery)

Constructed with high denier fabric, the Refresh category is the gold standard for compression apparel, as the recovery phase is where its athletic use began.  The application is vast, as it can be used post workout, during long travel (to prevent Deep Vein Thrombosis), during sleep to maximize muscle repair and recovery, and rehabilitation from injury or surgery.

2XU Compression Recovery Tight – Refresh

2XU currently offers a full range of compression apparel with its new revolutionary fabric to include arm sleeves, cycling bibs, compression shorts, and knickers as well.  You can find these and more on OneTri.com’s 2XU Compression homepage.

2XU Elite Compression Tight

Say hello to the 2XU Elite Compression Tights. This tight is not simply your average compression, but part of a newly designed line by 2XU called PXR (Perform, XFORM, Refresh). In particular, the XFORM garments give you the benefit of two-in-one compression. It is designed as an Active + Recovery tight. This means that the grade of compression and construction of the tight is designed to be used while training, as well as post-workout recovery. How is this possible? This is done through varying levels of fabric denier (thickness of a fabric) as well as level of graduated compression. Essentially, a strictly recovery garment would have the highest level of deniers as well as compression. The strictly active line would have the lowest. The XFORM, falling in between, has just the right amount of compression for recovery, while having the flexibility to train in them.

Specs on the tight:

  • For athletes demanding more power + support while offering breathability
  • Combination PWX FLEX front panel + extra powerful PWX WEIGHT in rear panel for added calf + hamstring support
  • Delivers additional support to quads, abductors + gluts
  • Works to reduce muscle fatigue + damage
  • Graduated fit promotes increased circulation

Wearing compression during activity comes with a plethora of benefits. The first being what I would consider the greatest benefit, increased  performance. Our muscles are exposed to vibration during training which in turn causes what is known as muscle oscillation. By reducing this, 2XU Compression has scientifically proven improved muscle endurance, strength, power output and lower heart rate for greater performance. Other added bonuses from compression include: heightened agility, as well as increased comfort and protection. The fabrics are designed to wick moisture as well as come with antibacterial which is embedded in the material to keep any kind of bacterial growth at bay.

The largest benefit to wearing compression post exercise is the faster rate of recovery. This is done through aiding the pumping action of the cardiovascular system; removing blood lactate from exercising muscles leading to reduced swelling, allowing for faster muscle repair and reduction in muscle soreness.

Why spend money on two sets of compression when you can get the benefits of both in one?

Louis Garneau Tri Pack Revo

I present to you the Louis Garneau Tri Pack Revo. What’s so different about this tri bag you ask? Firstly, it dons a chair! Yes, a chair. A fold up seat to rest those tired legs in transition. Perfect for when the race is over and you don’t feel like bending down to take those running kicks off. Beyond the chair, there’s a plethora of pockets and zippers. One main as pictured below, which is sectioned off into additional pockets, and then another main. If you’re thinking this many pockets on a tri bag is overkill, then try to use a standard backpack for a race and see how hard it is to keep track of the insane amount of items we trek around to and from training and races. Everything seems to have a place in the Revo. With all these pockets to hold your gear, the bag may get heavy. Thus, LG designed the shoulder straps to be soft and ventilated, as well as putting in a cushioned and also ventilated ergonomic back.

  • Mesh pocket under bag
  • Adjustable sternum strap
  • Velcro fastener on one side for one pump
  • Buckle strap on top
  • Mesh pocket for water bottle
  • Helmet holder
  • Safety light holder
  • Water resistant 420 Deniers
  • Reflective
  • Full capacity: 46 liters / 2806 CU
  • Adjustable outer flap with buckles and barrel

Above is an open view of the inside of the main pocket. There’s a great soft, zip up pocket perfect to hold your shades as well as a larger zip pocket to better organize your items. This bag is also perfect for multi-use as a traveling bag. I take mine on airplanes, road trips, and any other place that I can get away with not needing to use a heavy luggage bag. The Louis Garneau Tri Pack Revo is what everyone needs for toting their schwag to and from races, training, and traveling, available at One Tri. Below I can be found utilizing my handy fold-up stool in the office.

TYR Hurricane Category 5 Wetsuit Review

TYR Hurricane Category 5

Over the weekend, I was looking at my Facebook feed and saw some photos from Age Group Nationals in Vermont.  What floored me a bit was the fact that so many people were wearing TYR wetsuits, in particular the Cat 5!  Being the inquisitive I am, it warranted further investigation.

The Facts:

  • The wetsuit is made of the highest grade Yamamoto 39 cell neoprene, with 40 where the red stripes are on the shoulders.  This allows for unparalleled flexibility.
  • A higher cut on the legs makes this suit extremely easy to put on and take off.
  • The wetsuit itself was designed with valuable input from pros such as Andy Potts.
  • Over 30 of the top triathletes switched to the Hurricane before it even launched.  To name a few, Chrissie Wellington, Andy Potts, Mirinda Carfrae, Hilary Biscay.
  • Graded force catch panels – Thick graded panels are strategically aligned on the forearm to allow a catch and pull stroke like a built-in paddle.

The Swim

  • Shoulders feel great
  • Core stabilization feature is impressive.  The material that ends up wrapping around your core seems to separate the rest of your body, to ensure a proper swim form.

Taking it Off

  • Taking off the Hurricane Cat 5 was pretty easy, especially when it’s wet, thanks to the higher cut on the legs.

TYR makes their Cat 5 as a sleeveless wetsuit as well.  See the rest of the TYR Hurricane Wetsuits.

Profile Design Aerodrink Base Bar

Profile Design Aerodrink Base Bar. Simple and basic, this new bracket by Profile Design is probably one of my favorite new products.

  With this new bracket, your aero drink mounts directly onto your base bar, freeing up space from your cockpit and brings it closer to your body.  For a lot of people, it makes it easier to drink from this new position.  This bracket is also a lot more secure, and reduces any excessive rattling, as it allows the bottle to “click-in” place.

The bracket is for use with Profile Design aero drink bottles.  To see more Profile Design products, check out their brand page.

Race Day Revo Review

Economical, budget minded, thrifty. Any way you word it the Louis Garneau Race Day Revo backpack gives access to top-tier features, found in other more expensive bags, while maintaining an entry-level price point.

The Race Day Revo all suited up and ready for business

You’ve seen the 10 gallon hat, now meet the 5 gallon bag

This transition bag, in this humble reviewer’s opinion, doesn’t strike an especially strong aesthetic chord with my discerning eye for what’s kitsch or cool, however the bag delivers where it counts. Louis Garneau manages to fit in numerous bells and whistles into the Race Day Revo, incorporating:

  1. Vented wetsuit compartment
  2. Double sided-internal dry compartments for shoes
  3. Vented towel compartment
  4. Sunglasses/goggle pouch
  5. External helmet connector

The Race Day Revo manages all of these extras while still showing off the usual assortment of side pockets and water-bottle holder.

Just another day as the office water-boy...

Constructed from extremely thin nylon, this race day bag is completely waterproof and collapsible to the point where you could just roll it up and pack it anywhere when not in use. The internal compartment doesn’t seem large, since the bag itself is smaller than most, however we managed to fit a 5 gallon water bottle inside with ease meaning that it will fit all of your race day gear, and then some. When you break it down the Race Day Revo’s weight is designed to be light (it won’t break your momma’s back) and when a problem comes along, the Revo whips it (whips it real good).

Zoot Z-Pack Tri Bag

Zoot Z-Pack Training Bag

This Zoot Triathlon Bag is what you need for a streamlined race day or training session.  The Z-Pack features:

  • The ability to attach a Race Travel Bag for complete travel ensemble
  • An expandable helmet storage panel
  • A Separate wet/shoe storage pocket with external access
  • An external ID/business card window
  • Two mesh cargo pockets for easy-access storage
  • An interior CD/MP3 pocket with rubber headphone jack
  • A large main compartment with top access
  • Two external zippered, fleece-lined pockets
  • Cell phone pocket on shoulder strap
  • Vented back panel for breathability and comfort
  • Memory foam shoulder straps for comfort
  • Adjustable sternum and shoulder straps for different torso lengths

Specs:

  • Fabric: 1680D Nylon in high-abrasion areas, 420D Poly, PU- coated mesh
    Size: 11″ wide, 9″ deep, 21″ tall (28 cm wide, 23cm deep, 53.25 cm tall)

At a triathlon transition where space is usually scarce, having a bag too bulky would make things much too difficult.  One, you’ll likely peeve other people around you, and second,  merely getting organized ends up being a more daunting task if  you end up bringing too much to transition.  This is why the Z-Pack is a great choice.  Bring what you need to your training session or race day, so you can focus on what’s most important – your race.

See how the Z-Pack compares for your needs to other Triathlon Bags.

TYR Hurricane Category 3 Wetsuit

“You’re only as fast as your wetsuit will let you be.”-TYR


With that said, and your money pockets taken into consideration, feast your eyes on the Category 3. TYR’s Hurricane wetsuit series is composed of three tiers (pun intended), 1, 3, and 5. For those that want the primary technologies of the Category 5, but don’t want to spend top dollar, the C3 is the perfect option for a mid range suit. The wetsuit boasts light-weight Yamamoto 38/39 SCS coated neoprene, as well as varying 5mm panels. The high-buoyancy 5mm panels found in the chest, legs, and core were designed to help the swimmer to be elevated in the water and keep the swimmer from dropping their lower half. This feature, known as Speed Wrap Paneling, as well as the ones listed below were carried over from the CAT 5. The only features the Category 3 doesn’t come with when comparing it the 5, are that the entire surface area isn’t 100% Yamamoto Nano SCS rubber, and the inside isn’t lined with soft jersey fabric.

  • Free Range of Motion Zones – Less pinching and constriction, meaning more flexible reach.
  • Form Fitting Wrist Cuffs – Multi-stretch cuffs at the wrist allow powerful strokes while keeping water from entering the suit.
  • Quick Release Ankle Cuffs – Tapered legs allow for a speedy release of the suit without much effort.
  • 360 degree core stabilization system: Creates the sensation of your core feeling a wrap-around support which works to elevate the swimmer, ensuring optimal body position and saving energy over the long-term of the swim.
  • Graded Force Catch Panels: Paneling along forearm allows for greater pull in the water, such as a built-in paddle would.

If you do have an entry-level wetsuit and want to make the upgrade to a mid range suit that’s going to come with all the bells and whistles, the Hurricane Category 3 by TYR is great choice. Check out this wetsuit and many other triathlon wetsuits at One Tri.

Orca Core Tri Pant Review

Looking for a pair of tri shorts with a bit more coverage, with a comfortable pad, and has pockets?  You should consider the Orca Core Tri Pant.

It features a 6mm thick pad that provides ample coverage and support while on the bike, but not so big that it’d interfere with you on the run.  On the back is center pocket for storing personal items, such as additional nutrition, keys or an ID.  As for the inseam length, it’s 8.26 inches.

Other features of the short is that it has  reflective trim for lower light conditions, hydroseal leg hems, and a rubber waistband/internal draw cord.

Links of note:

Zoot Ultra Speed Shoe

So I’ll admit, I’ve been rather partial to my Ultra Tempo 4.0 over the past year and it’s become my little race baby. The kind of shoe that I take out once a week for a PR attempt and save for race day occasions. I loved that shoe.

Too bad.

I’ve just spent the last week with the Zoot Ultra Speed and to be truthful I’ve seen it (the Ultra Speed) before. It was that one shoe sitting on the sales wall looking like a g*d*mn electric smurf with its blue and yellow (hear them haters talk, but there’s nothing you can tell ’em….sorry wrong color/song) lace-less smug face forcing me to pass it off as a, “sure it looks fast, but that’s what they want you to think” shoe.

My opinion after a week:

Basically I was slapped in the face by how light it is (yes, I’ve said that many times and I’ll say it once more just to piss off redundancy grammar nerds.) It’s seriously 1337 sauce on your feet. You can’t even tell that they’re there. Whiiiiiiiich can be a problem if you want to treat these a daily trainer.

Don’t.

These shoes are race specific. Meaning they’re cutting all the corners in a shoe to give you the absolute fastest, best performing and overall biggest advantage that your feet can fathom come race day. Think of them as track spikes. Elite track runners don’t train in their spikes and neither should you.

This is literally the first shoe that I’ve felt that I should save for race day. Which makes me super giddy and happy to race knowing that they’re actually angled with a 10mm drop to give you a more aggressive platform for a mid-foot / forefoot running strike. Basically, long distances need not apply but you sprints / olympics / 70.3’s you’ll be in the clear with regard in having the lightest and fastest shoe.

I can’t wait to test these in Orangeman!

Zoot Compression Sock

First compression sock I’ve ever tried.

It felt like a sock. It looked like a sock. It did NOT act like a sock. I mean how complicated can these shoe liners get?

Apparently quite a bit.

So yes. I haven’t worn it in a race setting (it’s only been a week), but that’s what the Zoot compression sock is meant for; long-term performance / recovery benefits coupled with improved strike padding which results in a sock that will outlast whatever race you’re running in, no matter your level.

Frankly I like how I stand out from other runners on the trail while I’m wearing this advanced gear and I’m pretty arrogant in the fact that I’m ALWAYS wanting someone to come and race me during a workout. So far no takers when I’ve been wearing this coupled with my Ultra Tempo 4.0’s and ridiculously short electric lime green running shorts. (Sorry no link there. Those shorts are mine!)

But then again, I’m willing to wager it’s just the shorts that’s keeping people away, which only makes me wonder, “if only Zoot would make some lime green socks…”

The long sock: no longer a modern day Shark vs. Jet accessory but rather comes with added athletic/recovery specific benefits.

Orca Alpha Review

My first impression on the Alpha is that it’s another flagship wetsuit from a quality manufacturer, and it is. What I’ve discovered is that reviews or outside industry impressions are scarce and far-between for the Alpha and that the majority of the copy on the internet comes straight from Orca’s marketing department. Allow me to fill in the blanks.

You can expect the standard top of the line qualities from the Alpha: 40 cell Yamamoto, Nano SCS coating, quick out ankles etc. These are all features that have become commonplace most of the uncommon top tiered suits but what sets the Alpha apart from the rest of the pack are three key features.

  1. The Alpha’s shoulders are ridiculously thin. 1.5mm thin to be exact. The idea is that you want a balance between form and function and the 1.5mm thickness gives your body the range of motion needed for your swim stroke without sacrificing buoyancy.
  2. Instead of simply adding a gripper or pattern for the catch panel the Alpha instead features a 3mm thick contoured catch panel, branded as “AquaTread”. The added thickness layered on the super thin 1.5mm shoulders/arms gives the suit just a bit more buoyancy positioned in the perfect place
  3. “Aerodome” 5mm neoprene.  Orca took a 5mm cut of it’s 40cell Yamamoto neoprene, put a bunch of holes in it and then sealed it. The holes increase the buoyancy of the paneled areas by 30%, trapping air and using it to keep your tired rear afloat.

After looking over the suit I can’t wait to take it out for a test swim and as far as flagship wetsuits go, the Alpha is now at the top of my list.

Zoot Endurance Tri Tank

Here we have the feminine Endurance Tri Tank by Zoot. It is a tri -specific top which is perfect for racing as well as training. It is composed of a nylon/spandex fabric featuring Endura technology. This technology is custom to specific Zoot items, allowing for optimum compression and muscle support, as well as reduces muscle fatigue and extends endurance. The stretch in the fabric allows for superior range of motion. The top also features a built-in bra, as well as a 10″ zipper. Zippers can be great on race apparel because it allows for venting should you get over-heated, and opens the top to feel less restricting. There are two pockets that are placed on the sides to avoid catching any water are perfect to hold your nutrition goodies. The top comes in an array of colors: Virtual Pink/Fuel, Tropic/Green Lantern, Indigo/Ice, Black. The collar around the neckline gives the top an added touch of style. Pair with the Zoot Endurance Tri Short to complete the look. Both on sale now at One Tri.